11 February 2021 EPS Emmy Noether Distinction

Prof María García-Parajo

ICREA Prof María García-Parajo awarded the Winter 2020 distinction from the European Physical Society The European Physical Society (EPS) is comprised of members from 42 National Physical Societies in Europe. It includes individuals from all fields of physics and European research institutions. As a learned society, the EPS engages in activities that strengthen ties among the physicists in Europe. As a federation of National Physical Societies, the EPS studies issues of concern to all European countries relating to physics research, science policy and education.

The EPS recognizes outstanding contributions of individual physicists in their research, education and service to EPS through special distinctions. The Emmy Noether Distinction for Women in Physics was established to bring noteworthy women physicists to the wider attention of the scientific community, policy makers and the general public and to identify role models that will help to attract women to a career in physics.

The EPS has announced today that ICREA Prof at ICFO Dr María García Parajo has been selected as the laureate of the prestigious EPS Emmy Noether Distinction “for her outstanding contributions to nano-biophysics and to numerous programs to support women in physics”. Commenting on this honor, Prof García-Parajo remarked that “this award means a lot to me as a recognition for scientific achievements. Even more importantly however, it reinforces my firm commitment to continue supporting younger women in Science and to show by example that even though if it is hard, a career in science is possible.”

Prof García-Parajo received her PhD in Physical Electronics in 1993 at Imperial College, London, UK. After a two-years postdoc at the L2M-CNRS, Bagneux, France she obtained a permanent position in the Applied Optics group of the University of Twente, the Netherlands from 1998 to 2005. In 2005 she moved to Barcelona as ICREA Research Professor, first hosted at the IBEC - Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia and since July 2011 at ICFO, where she leads the Single Molecule Biophotonics group. Her research focuses on the development of advanced optical techniques to the study of biological processes at the single molecular level on living cells. She coordinates several international research projects and has been a member of the executive board of the Spanish Biophysical Society and the International Fluorescence Society.

In addition to the newly awarded EPS Emmy Noether Distinction, Prof García-Parajo has received several other prestigious awards including the Young Academy fellowship of the Netherlands Royal Academy of Sciences (1999), the Advanced Grant of the Human Frontiers Science Program (2012), Bruker National Prize in Biophysics given by the Spanish Biophysical Society (2017) and Advanced ERC Grant (2017). She is currently part of the Gender Committee at ICFO and actively involved in (inter)national actions to promote gender equity in Science.